A man’s shirt has always been a distinctive element of any gentleman, a garment with a timeless charm and a symbol of social status that has renewed itself over the years, becoming an emblem of versatility and style. The number of models, fabrics and colours available is infinite, but it’s not always easy to find the right fit that can enhance your appearance and suit you to a T. Here is some simple advice for choosing your perfect shirt: you’ll just need a tape measure and a mirror.
1. The collar must be a finger’s distance away from the neck. The collar is the most important part of the shirt; you can deduce the correct size from it, and it must lie at the neck without exerting pressure when the shirt is buttoned. In addition, it’s the part most visible under a jacket and therefore performs an important role in determining the formality and the use of the shirt itself. The shape of the collar, too, plays an important role, with the French collar being more suitable for a long, slender face, while the Italian one, with points less spread, is recommended for those with a broader face.
2. The sleeves must drop in a straight line without wrinkles. They must be slightly wider at the top of the arm compared with at the wrist and they must have a minimum fullness so that they do not pull at the elbow when the arm is bent. If the sleeve is too narrow, in fact, the fabric will be too tight-fitting and if it is too wide, too many creases will be created on elbow, arm and cuffs.
3. The cuffs must cover the whole wrist and rest on the joint at the base of the thumb. The cuff must be long enough to remain in position even when the arm is bent because it must always be visible even under a jacket. It must also be quite tight so that it doesn’t slide over the hand, and successfully cover a wristwatch, which shouldn’t be visible.
4. The shoulder seams must allow the arms to be raised to 45 degrees. The seam must sit exactly on the joint of the shoulder with the arm, therefore at the farthest point from the centre of the chest, so that it doesn’t crease and isn’t too tight. The armhole must allow movement without the shirt coming out of the trousers by more than a couple of centimetres.
5. Choose the length according to how the shirt is to be worn. If we’re talking about a classic shirt to be worn inside the trousers, its length must not exceed 10-15 centimetres from the lower back, the hem must be curved and, when the arms are raised, it must not come out of the trousers. For casual models, worn outside the trousers, the shirt must not fall below the bottom of the trouser-zip.
6. Choose the width according to your body type. The right fit enhances your body shape by emphasising its merits so, based on your build, you can choose a more slimfit shirt or a more usual straight-cut one. In the correct size, a shirt must fall along the sides of the body without creating folds or wrinkles around the buttonholes. The most slender types opt for a close-fitting shirt, which has darts to highlight the lines of the body, while for heavier builds a classic shirt is recommended, which will adapt gently to one’s contours.
So if you want to purchase a shirt online, we would advise you to take your measurements or use a shirt that fits you well in order to measure the collar width, the sleeve length, the width of the shoulders at their widest point, the waist at the height of the navel and the length from collar to hem. When you’ve done this you can compare your measurements with the size chart in the Xacus e-shop, where you’ll find all the information about the fit of every shirt in our online store. Now you can go and choose your perfect shirt in our Xacus e-shop!
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